Make your own LED fixture from a Tetra-pak box

noctobula lamp
© Fatello!

TreeHugger emeritus Ruben once described TetraPaks as "seven incomprehensibly thin layers of paper, plastic and aluminum." We have been critical of the so-called recycling of TetraPaks in the past, but here is upcycling we can get behind: a clever lamp design from Italian design studio Fatello!.

Designed by Mireia Gordi Vila and Federico Trucchia as an open design framework, Noctambula will be later freely released as a set of instructions following Fattelo!’s philosophy. Fattelo! looks into re-appropriating household waste materials to give them an unexpected use. For this project we focused on exploring the technical and design possibilities of TetraPak as a conductive material for low voltage circuitry.

The aluminum layer in the TetraPak becomes the electrical conductor; cutting out part of it creates the circuit pattern. You then hook up batteries and LED bulbs, fold it up as shown on the plans (not yet released on their website) and voila! you have a cute little light. This is a really clever use of that aluminum foil layer.

A circuit that has been thought of as aesthetically pleasing and embodied as its own physical interface As such, there’s no difference between container and content. As both are one and the same. There’s no functional circuit inside a box but rather a circuit shaped as a lamp. This lamp is both built and connected through its lampshade.

Finally, instead of turning TetraPaks into toilet paper, they become something useful. Just be sure you use rechargeable batteries. Fatello! will be giving the plans away under Creative Commons, and will be selling a kit with all the parts (except the milk carton). Coming soon here.

Make your own LED fixture from a Tetra-pak box
Finally a real way to recycle and repurpose the ubiquitous packaging.

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